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Community Leadership Program – Empowering positive change

Where passionate community members like you can turn your love for resilient communities into positive, lasting change through collective leadership.

Five-day leadership development program for positive community impact and drought preparedness

Over the course of five days, the Community Leadership Program (part of the Helping Regional Communities Prepare for Drought Initiative) is designed to nurture your self-awareness, strengthen community engagement, build resilience and hone your leadership skills. By embracing diverse perspectives and prioritising community wellbeing, you’ll be equipped to create a meaningful impact in the context of drought resilience and beyond.


1st Session: February 5, 6 & 7 2024 - 2.5 days

2nd Session: March 5, 6 & 7 2024 - 2.5 days


Session 1: The Mill Inn Tavern and Function Centre, Millmerran

Session 2: Granite Belt Retreat, Stanthorpe

Who is eligible for the program?

Are you someone who lives within the Darling Downs, Surat Basin, Goondiwindi Area? Are you someone driven by the desire to make a real difference in your community? Do you thrive on seeking innovative solutions to complex challenges? Do you want to help your community through challenges posed by future droughts and changing climate? If so, this program is for you. We invite individuals 18 years and over who are committed to exploring new avenues for building thriving communities.

Become a changemaker

  • Learn new ways to create positive change and how to bring others along with you.

  • Explore how you can find solutions to complex challenges in your community.

  • Start looking for innovative ways to make your community thrive.

  • Find out what leadership without roles and titles can look like.


Get practical skills

  • Lead regardless of your role or title – practical community leadership skills to help you make a difference.

  • Work with others – collaboration and engagement skills to share stories that influence and transform.

  • Communicate with purpose – communication skills to share stories that influence and transform.

  • Balance community wellbeing – deep listening and coaching skills to support others.

  • Stay resilient – understand your behaviour patterns and thoughts in stressful times and find a more resilient and balanced version of yourself.


Get to know yourself and your community, then build a thriving future together

  • Explore connection to place, self and each other.

  • Articulate personal strengths, resilience and leadership goals.

  • Investigate in opportunities for leadership action.

  • Engage stakeholders to build a richer picture of what is and what could be.

  • Generate a leadership vision and adaptive leadership mud map.

  • Prepare for leadership action and storytelling for community leadership.


Backed by the Future Drought Fund and Australia’s leadership development provider with 30 years of experience in rural, regional and remote communities.

This Community Leadership Program is free thanks to the Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund. It is delivered by the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation in partnership with the Foundation for Rural Regional Renewal and part of the Helping Regional Communities Prepare for Drought Initiative.

The Australian Rural Leadership Foundation has been at the forefront of rural, regional and remote leadership development in Australia for over three decades. As a trusted provider, the ARLF has successfully delivered more than 126 transformational leadership programs that empower people to initiate meaningful change within their communities, organisations and industries. With a network of more than 2,500 alumni across diverse sectors including industry, community, not-for-profits, corporate, government, and family farms, ARLF alumni play a crucial role in creating thriving rural, regional and remote communities that contribute to the strength of the nation.

Frequently asked questions

Who is this activity for?

In a nutshell, this activity is a platform for adults who are passionate about their communities and drought and climate resilience. It’s particularly targeted at people who meet the following criteria:

  • Those who have a strong desire to drive meaningful change within their community.

  • Individuals with an interest in finding innovative solutions for complex community challenges.

  • Those who are committed to exploring new avenues and approaches for building a thriving community.

  • People who have an interest in driving local action to effectively prepare for drought.

If this is you, please join us on this journey of personal and community development, where you’ll learn innovative problem-solving techniques and foster collaboration. Let’s create a brighter future that benefits us all.


Why are you offering this activity?

Red Earth Community Foundation was successful in receiving a Community Impact Grant from the Foundation for Rural Regional Renewal under the Helping Regional Communities Prepare for Drought Initiative. In addition to the grant, the Initiative includes the option to run a leadership activity to further engage people in our community.

The Initiative is funded by the Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund which provides $100m each year for programs and projects to support farmers and regional communities build their drought resilience. It has committed more than $40 million over four years towards building social capital and social connectedness and supporting more drought resilient communities.   


How do drought resilience and leadership relate to each other?

The frequency of and severity of drought and dry periods in the future is predicted to increase. In response, many farmers are taking proactive measures to prepare and adapt. However, it is equally important for the communities upon which these farmers rely to have opportunities to come together and collectively address the challenges posed by drought and changing climates. But coming together and working together can be difficult, particularly when everyone has different experiences and perspectives. This is where leadership comes in. By getting to know yourself and those around you better, and growing key leadership attributes such as self-awareness, communication and conflict resolution, we can foster collaboration and proactive behaviours and build communities that can weather the challenges to emerge stronger, together.


Will I be away from home or work?

Yes, this program is residential. Four nights of accommodation and catering are provided. You will need to take time off work and family commitments including childcare to participate.


I’m not a leader. Should I sign up?

Absolutely. Many people who participate in an Australian Rural Leadership Program are not in traditional or formal leadership roles. We understand calling yourself a leader can feel a little strange, but don’t worry, we see leadership as a behaviour and intent that has nothing to do with your job, role or title. If you are actively involved in your community or region.

Where can I learn more about the Helping Regional Communities Prepare for Drought Initiative?

Visit this website to learn more

Where can I learn more about the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation and Foundation for Rural Regional Renewal?

Visit the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation’s ( or FRRR’s ( website.

Where can I apply?



Leadership is not a position or a title, it's an action and example

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